An era ends.
Opening the morning email from A Peace of the Universe bookstore, the message began with Judith's heartfelt goodbye. For nearly 25 years, Judith has been the radiant smile and calming manner so many in the Phoenix spiritual community have come to know and love. Crossing the threshold of her bookstore felt like some invisible fairy was smudging your entire being with wafts of serenity.
Before the freeway bulldozed her bookstore into a much smaller space in 1995, the entire second floor was available for classes and groups like the Full Moon Meditation. As many as 25 or 30 women might be sitting in a circle chanting to drums, rattles, rainsticks—even the baritone reverberations of a didgeridoo that Shenayda balanced between her legs. Tie me kangaroo down, sport.
Of all the revelations that occurred at those events, the most unforgettable moment happened in the middle of a full moon in Libra, the night Shenayda guided us into the mysteries of our Inner Male and Inner Female. This was all about yin-yang integration, and who wouldn’t be up for something so sexy and delightful? Dropping into my inner sanctum and accessing my masculine and feminine archetypes was not a problem. They were oddly but beautifully costumed in clothes from a by-gone era, so this relationship dynamic was old—ancient.
My sense of the relationship unfolded in a few seconds of “being with” them and an undeniable truth became painfully clear: My Inner Man was an asshole.
He was a bundle of fear and insecurities that manifested in self-serving, controlling, sometimes aggressive narcissism with complete disregard for the sensitivities, sensibilities, desires, and boundaries of my Inner Woman. Whatever she wanted or needed was beyond his comprehension, much less consideration. He simply couldn’t afford to turn his attention in that direction because it would inevitably conflict with his constant need for control, gratification and self-aggrandizement.
I was still gripped in a shock wave when the meditation ended and sharing began. This was the kind of fellow I utterly disdained and yet there he was. And there was no running from, breaking up with, or divorcing this one.
Feeling slightly paralyzed and speechless at the time, I brought that experience up again about 15 years later—at another meditation led by Shenayda with a much smaller group of women. Maybe it was the look on my face. Maybe it was the word asshole, but the entire group burst out laughing. Shenayda had to compose herself enough to say, “Maggy, you need to write about that.” Ten years later here I am. Apparently, some things take time.
I could see how viscerally my inner male reacted to fear, how he insisted on running the show and refused to listen to the wisdom and tap into the flow of grace that my goddess could offer. Clearly, this badly broken Yang is something I brought in to heal (maybe starting with a few long, lingering baths in Epsom salts and essential oil blends for Humility and Surrender). This take-action, left-brained, make-it-happen Yang energy needs to be set free from the grip of ego, fear, and the drag of past wounds so he can support, champion and empower my Yin energy.
But that's not all. My beautiful, miraculous Yin energy, the Power of Love within and around me, needs to move through the birth process and emerge in all of her transplendent glory—not as fire, but as water.
Nothing in the world is softer than water. But for attacking the hard, the unyielding, nothing can surpass it. —The Tao
It's easy to look back over the multiple incarnations of my life and see quantum shifts in my intimate relationships, that personal interplay of yin and yang. Thinking about "the way I used to be" can be almost unimaginable for women who have suffered a great deal to grow into their power and authenticity. It can be tough to remember being that silent, that compliant, feeling that powerless, having such low self-esteem, giving so much and receiving so little. Having our inner world being so completely out of balance and controlled by others.
And no matter how much work we have done, there's always more. We can always dive a little bit deeper into the mysteries. Tightrope walkers don't strike a balance pose and then waltz across the rope. They intentionally and very purposefully renew that sense of equilibrium and balance with each and every step.
I love the Grandmothers movement and the Net of Light they are casting across the planet. According to Hopi prophecy, "When the wisdom of the Grandmothers is heard, the world will heal." Today, more than 200 groups of women around the globe are working individually and gathering in groups to assist the Grandmothers in restoring and balancing the power of the feminine principle on Earth. In her introductory video, founder Sharon McErlane says she was thrilled that the "net" she had been visualizing for the past 20 years—the very essence of creation—was seen and described as "the cosmic web" by scientists peering into dark matter via Hubble telescope advancements.
On her website, Sharon invites women to participate in "holding the earth and cradling life," but she also describes the energy source within us for doing this work as "the star, the jewel in our hearts." Which connects directly to Gary Springfield's work with the heart chakra and the living jewel, the Star Tetrahedron. And how fitting that Gary's awakening began when an 82-year-old woman known as the Angel Lady of Carmel took him under her wing and showed him "how the power of love can heal any condition, reawaken childlike magic within, and open the door to the living relationship with the divine and sacred Soul within every human being."
Remember the balance; the give-and-take of energy. The symbol of yin and yang is more than the integration of male and female. It’s also the balance of light and dark, soft and hard, active and passive, in and out, giver and receiver. You can’t have one without the other. ―Brownell Landrum